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Cops run into trouble with electric bikes

HK Standard

Staff reporter

Monday, May 21, 2012

The police plan to use electric vehicles for patrols has run into trouble with the frequent breakdown of 12 imported electric motorcycles.

Three of them spent almost as much time in the repair shop as on the road.

Police spent HK$1.2 million on the 12 electric motorcycles between 2008 and 2009.

They were under maintenance for 143 days each year on average. This means they function normally for around seven months a year.

Three worked for less than six months a year while one, imported in April 2008, was on the road less than five months a year.

Police said most of the maintenance work was related to battery issues, reported Sing Tao Daily, sister newspaper of The Standard.

Meanwhile, the government has introduced 21 electric cars costing HK$9.5 million to various departments, part of Chief Executive Donald Tsang Yam-kuen’s green policy initiative to improve air quality in the city.

However, it was found that these electric cars travel only an average of 936 kilometers per month, much less than other government vehicles.

One of the electric cars belonging to the Water Supplies Department travels only 393km per month on average and is idle 11 days a month.

The department said it realizes the vehicle is underused and has vowed to strengthen battery recharging devices to enhance its operation.

Green Power scientific research and conservation division head Cheng Luk-ki said the government has to explain to the public why the electric vehicles are not fully utilized.

The government could be using them merely for exhibition and promotional purposes, he said.

In his 2009 policy address, Tsang promoted the use of electric vehicles.

The Environment Bureau has been working with a number of electric vehicle manufacturers to boost use of the vehicles.

Tsang said he expects Hong Kong to rank second in Asia behind Japan in the use of electric vehicles.

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